Dozens of animal lovers took their pets to the Malate church in the Philippines capital on Sunday for the annual blessing of animals. The blessing was held a day before the Feast of Saint Francis of Assisi, the patron saint of animals, which coincides with World Animal Day. The yearly ritual allows Catholic devotees to hear mass along with their pets, then have the animals brought towards the front of the church for a special blessing. On Sunday, Roman Catholic priest Father Mickey Martin sprinkled holy water on many dogs, cats, birds, dogs and mean-looking reptiles. The feast day of Saint Francis also coincides with World Animal Day, also celebrated by animal lovers worldwide.